Fishing in Alaska: 12,000 Rivers

About Alaska · Outdoor Activities

Alaska’s fishing adventures are among the best on Earth, is a year-round experience across the state. From deep-sea sports fishing to river fly-fishing, fishing from a rowboat on a quiet lake, and even ice-fishing in the dead of winter, Alaska has more fishing opportunity than anywhere else.

Hooked on Alaska: Where Are the Fish?
Where? Everywhere! Thanks to coastlines along the Pacific, Bering, and Arctic seas, Alaska boasts 50% of the US shoreline. On top of that, it’s got 12,000 rivers, and more than three-million lakes spanning more than 20-acres each, all packed with fish, putting Alaska on the map as one of the world’s top commercial fisheries.

Despite this multi-billion-dollar industry, there’s still plenty of fish for you, and the bears alike.

Watch any bear long enough and you’ll see they’ve got favorite fishing holes where they know they can count on a great catch, and so do Alaska’s great fishing guides!

Why You Need a Guide
With fishing being huge player in Alaska’s economy, fisheries have extensive sustainability management. As a result, Alaska has several fishing regions, all with varying laws, conditions, seasons, and species, which can make planning and preparing mighty complicated for outsiders heading in with some flies on a line.

Beyond helping you get the seasons and licensing sorted, guides know where’s hopping and where’s not. With 12,000 rivers driving fish traffic through the state, a hot spot yesterday might be dead today and non-existent tomorrow. Guides follow traffic patterns and spawning routes, so they know where fish are going, and they’ll take you to bountiful fishing holes to net some.

What You Can Catch
There are plenty of species to choose from, and some of them can only be found in the north.

For saltwater fish, catchable species include:

  • King Salmon (aka Chinook)
  • Silver Salmon (aka Coho)
  • Pink Salmon (aka Humpback)
  • Chum Salmon (aka Dog or Keta)
  • Pacific Halibut
  • Yelloweye Rockfish (aka Pacific Red Snapper)
  • Ling Cod
  • Arctic Char

The freshwater catch includes:

  • Cutthroat Trout
  • Rainbow Trout
  • Steelhead
  • Arctic Char/Dolly Varden
  • Grayling Grayling
  • Northern Pike
  • Sheefish


What’s Stopping You? Get Out There!

Whether you’re into night-fishing on an iced-over lake under the Northern Lights, or standing hip-deep in a river as bears catch their first salmon of the year, Alaska is waiting to give you the fishing adventure of a lifetime.

Alaska

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Sandra Aaron

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